2015-2016 National Chief of Staff/Extension
Chief of Staff/Extension: Increase Meeting Attendance – Add Some FUN!!!
Are you keeping your meetings open and fun? Are you:
- A Good Listener?
All of the above (and more) means you are receptive to new ideas for our VFW Auxiliary and welcoming our new members.
Has your Auxiliary:
- Had a backyard meeting?
- Had a meeting at your local Veterans Park? (Keeping within the Bylaws)
- Had a breakfast meeting?
- Changed the time of your meeting in the summer or winter months to accommodate seasonal schedules?
- Had a themed meeting (I.e. holiday, tea party, fiesta, sports, western, decade beach/Hawaiian, etc.)? An occasional themed meeting adds some fun to the meeting and allows members to learn more about one another.
A few other ideas to help welcome new members:
- Encourage the use of name tags for all members (not just Officers) at each meeting. There are few things more intimidating and embarrassing than asking someone’s name if you have never met them (or have before and have forgotten their name!)
- An acronym chart. Every organization (ours included!) is full of acronyms. When someone first joins, they don’t know what a SOI or COA is. It’s easier to become interested and involved in our organization if you know what someone is talking about!
- Consider doing an icebreaker (no more than 10 minutes) before you open the meeting.
- Are your meetings dominated by a few members? If so, try passing out three to five coins (or tickets) to each meeting attendee. Attendees must “spend” a coin or ticket each time they talk. No borrowing allowed!
- Keep it positive! At the start of each meeting, ask each member to briefly (less than 20-30 seconds) share something positive. Some ideas include:
- Share how you’ve helped a veteran since the last meeting.
- Name a member who’s helped you since the last meeting.
- Mention one Auxiliary/Post event or volunteer opportunity you’re looking forward to in the coming month.
- Something you learned about the VFW Auxiliary and/or its National Programs since the last meeting.
Change is good, especially if you make it fun and you are sensitive to everyone’s needs.
Let’s get out there and be positive, enthusiastic VFW Auxiliary members. Let’s not say no. LET’S SAY YES and get members coming to meetings and being involved in the Auxiliary. Let’s say YES to the new male members waiting to be asked to join our VFW Auxiliary. Be Optimistic! JUST RECRUIT!